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Understanding both the climate and the functioning of the earth as a system is one of the largest challenges of our time. In this context, polar regions play a pivotal role. Melting ice caps at the poles will cause sea levels to rise and, consequently, will make many coastal areas uninhabitable. Thawing of permafrost regions will release enormous quantities of the greenhouse gas methane. Hence, what happens to the polar regions has a direct effect on our lives. In the past, three large-scale international initiatives were aimed at studying the polar regions. These extensive scientific events, with numerous expeditions, establishment of new research stations and internationally coordinated observation programmes, significantly enhanced our knowledge of the polar regions. The International Polar Year 2007/08 intends to continue this tradition. Large-scale measuring campaigns and field studies will facilitate our understanding of the earth and its climate. This will be the only way to prepare for upcoming changes of our environment. ... [Information of the supplier, modified]
The Toolik-Arctic Geobotanical Atlas (TAGA) is a web-based multi-scale collection of geobotanical maps and related material. It includes maps at seven different scales, from 1-m2 plots to the entire Arctic. The TAGA focuses on research sites at the Toolik Field Station and Imnavait Creek, Alaska, but also covers the Kuparuk River Basin, northern Alaska, Arctic Alaska, and the Circumpolar Arctic. Diverse geobotanical themes include geology, topography landforms, surficial geomorphology, soils, and vegetation. The maps and web site were developed at the Alaska Geobotany Center in collaboration with several other groups at the University of Alaska Fairbanks (see About the TAGA). The Toolik-Arctic Geobotanical Atlas is the outreach and education component of the Greening of the Arctic initiative of the International Polar Year. Educational application of the TAGA in the classroom is a major goal of the initiative through linkage of the project to the University of the Arctic and the UNEP Environment Programme / Grid-Arendal and the Arctic Environmental Atlas. ... [Information of the supplier]
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